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NEWS | Dec. 19, 2019

People: Develop people to be their best

By PSNS & IMF Public Affairs

Developing people was a core component of the first Strategic Framework, created in 2017, and continues to be an important focus area. The People Executive Steering Committee recognizes that high-quality employees who are excited about their work and careers are essential to meeting the command’s vision to deliver on time, every time.

The command has some long-standing employee development programs such as the apprentice program and more recently launched other programs to assist employees. One of the People ESC’s recent successes is Succession Training of the Next Generation, now in its second year of preparing employees for senior leadership positions. STRONG started as an initiative from the People strategy and was turned into a full-fledged command program. Similarly, another initiative turned command program is competency management, the use of commercial off the shelf software to define technical and non-technical competencies specific to each position. Shipyard-wide non-technical competencies include knowledge of the organization, interpersonal relationships, problem solving, taking ownership, teamwork and alignment. Employees and their supervisors are able to assess the employee’s level of knowledge of each competency, and resolve any differences between their assessments. Once the assessment is complete, the employee and supervisor may identify gaps and develop plans for improvement. Improvement opportunities include formal training and mentoring. Over 7,000 employees are using competency management, supported by trained staff in Command University.

The People ESC is currently working on two new initiatives. The first is supporting the creation of a Command Career Center. This initiative was based on feedback from employees that attempts to apply for jobs via USA jobs was frustrating and that career development opportunities were fragmented. The Command Career Center is being managed by Command University and the first career counselors have arrived and are undergoing training. The career center is open during this transitional period. The career center will function similar to a collegiate career center, where employees can make an appointment with a counselor to receive assistance on identification of career opportunities, resume preparation and interview preparation. The current initiative is a one year pilot that will be reevaluated in May 2020.

While developing people has been the focus of the People ESC since its inception, recent learning from efforts to eliminate harassment in the workplace necessitates inclusion of shipyard culture as a distinct People Strategy responsibility. Future efforts will involve the People ESC in these actions, including the Command Anti-Harassment and Discrimination Team’s effort, and supporting the Diversity and Inclusion Council.

In the coming months, the People Strategy will build on these efforts to develop our people to be their best.